Quantity vs Quality: is there room for both in marketing?
May 31, 2021 ● 7 min read
In the digital marketing industry, the debate over quantity vs quality has been relevant for a long time. Average social media users see as many as 5 000 ads or more daily. Out of all of the showcased ads, the eye catches around 150. And statistically, customers engage with only 12 of all shown ads. The impression of the ad is formed in less than a second.
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By the time the user blinks - they already made up an opinion about the ad. More demanding and less engaging viewer behavior could be a complex challenge to complete for a marketer. So, where exactly should you stand when taking valuable marketing actions?
The eternal question: high-quality or high-volume?
While trying to reach out to customers, a clear understanding of what path a business should focus on is crucial. Many brands tend to experiment with both quantity and quality and measure the outcome of the performance. Here are a few examples of how that works:
- Quantity integration in the marketing strategy could increase brand awareness. “Done is better than perfect” translates to broader abilities, for example, more pages where the brand can advertise. However, the overload of ads, blog posts, or interactions could resonate as spammy. As a result, the loss of interest could be more significant than the growth of it. Marketing giant HubSpot’s research proves that the number of interactions could increase web traffic but not the conversion rate.
- Quality, on the other hand, is critical for conversions. The new generation of consumers is adopting a “buy less but better” philosophy. Customers prefer a more quality-centred brand, and the business’s success is directly proportional to the loyalty of the consumers. Therefore, quality products and services are expected to have a well-executed marketing campaign. If advertising is mediocre, even the greatest product won’t draw the interest of the consumers.
Going that extra mile with the marketing actions
Earlier, we talked about how attention is the new currency of the marketing industry. And to earn it, the marketer has to set up both extraordinary and memorable marketing strategies for the brand.
In his video, Jamie Windsor analyzed famous YouTuber Peter McKinnon’s path to success by following his mantra “done is better than perfect”. However, Jamie outlined that not everyone can succeed when chosen quantity over quality. He added that most of his successful works were created when he went that extra mile with it. The big-name brands use paid ads to reach out to customers, but only 4.4% of these paid campaigns lead to a conversion.
So why is it that the quality matters so much if the quantity still reaches the customer? Let’s take a deeper look into it:
- Consumer’s eyes are more likely to stop by an advertisement, which revolves around quality and uniqueness. According to Industry Insights, 52% of respondents are more loyal to the brand that focuses on quality and understands their needs.
- A satisfied customer will spread word-of-mouth bringing the targeted audience to the business. A Demand Gen Report survey provided an insight that 92% of the respondents give the most credence to the recommendations and user-generated feedback when making a purchase decision.
- If the brand provides high-quality services or products, it is bound to increase sales and profit.
Standing out with the marketing actions
Businesses that adopted the “strive for perfection” ideology focus on the quality of the product and advertising campaigns that reflect that quality.
Focusing on a customer instead of a product. For example, we all know Nike’s “Just Do It” slogan. Back in 1988, the company's sales were $800 million. After successfully launching a campaign featuring the slogan, Nike managed to drive sales up to $2 billion within the decade. While other similar brands focused on promoting their products, Nike decided to take a different marketing approach by calling customers to release the inner-animal that lies within them. Dan Widen, the man behind the “Just Do It” slogan, wanted to emphasize the brand’s ideology on how the quality of the product could motivate customers to reach their goals. After more than 30 years, the core slogan is still relevant, and it is widely known & used as part of Nike’s core identity.
Addressing social problems. In 2004, Unilever’s research found out that only 4% of the women considered themselves beautiful. Shortly after, Dove, with its marketing partners Ogilvy & Mather, released “The Real Beauty” campaign. In the short clips, different women shared their stories on why they lost their self-esteem and what helped them feel good again. And it exploded all over the world. Magazines, TV shows, and even news started to talk about women’s empowerment, thanking Dove for starting the conversation. Years later, the campaign evolved into many different forms and new product releases. To this day, this marketing campaign helped Dove increase sales from $2.5 billion to $4 billion, and the campaign message changed the way we all look at beauty.
Maximizing the idea behind the brand’s tagline. Red Bull is no longer just an energy drink brand. The company took action to organize or sponsor extreme sports events under its name. From the breathtaking Air Race in the United Kingdom to crazy ridiculous Soapbox races in Jordan. The brand is giving wings to everyone around the world. As the drink is directly associated with energy, they power up their marketing strategy with the most energy-required activities. And consumers love it.
As of 2021, Red Bull dominates the energy drink marketplace with 43% of the niche’s market share. The most iconic marketing campaign they pushed out into the world was the Red Bull Stratos skydiving project back in 2012. In partnership with the company, famous Austrian skydiver Baumgartner flew approximately 39 kilometers into the stratosphere over New Mexico and then parachuted back to Earth. This broke world records and instantly became one of the most viral marketing actions to this day. The campaign cost approximately $60 million, while after the event, sales rose by 7% in the following six months generating $1.6 billion and helped to sell over 5.2 billion cans in the following year.
The right mix of quality and quantity
As in life, so in marketing, there has to be a balance. A balance of both - quality and quantity. As the marketing actions start to take off, there must be a clear understanding of what action to take next.
To determine which volume: high-quality or high-quantity, is performing better for your brand, you could run A/B testing of different marketing actions to see the outcome of different approaches. In the wide marketing field, there could be room for both.
Determining the KPIs is crucial for finding the right formula of quality and quantity. Key performance indicators in marketing are a measurable value tied to specific objectives of a marketing campaign. It indicates progress during the campaign. It also helps to measure marketing effectiveness & results at the end of a campaign.
All three of the companies above are focused on the fast-moving consumer goods sector, where sales, CLV, and ROI are the main KPIs. To achieve their goals, they used different types of approaches to the customers:
- Nike focused on the customer, not on the product itself.
- Dove’s “The Real Beauty” campaign addressed women’s self-esteem.
- Redbull stepped outside the box and created an extraordinary extreme sports campaign linked directly to its slogan.
KPIs may differ when taking various marketing actions. Businesses are focusing on actions, which they think will bring the most value to their brand. If you got this far into the article, you clearly understand the importance of close metric tracking. Every KPI set by marketing has to be quantifiable and tracked constantly.
Different marketing approaches work for different businesses. However, a few takeaways are clear:
- The key to success lies in focusing more on the consumer and the product or service you deliver than the market competition.
- Taking more time to polish your marketing campaign could lead to better results.
- There is plenty of room for experimentation and finding out what your customers are expecting.
- Good strategy analysis and KPIs are crucial for the campaign’s success.
Although quality vs. quantity is not an “either-or” proposition, conversions are being driven by quality, and that’s the target most of the brands are focused on reaching.